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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  October 9, 2013 10:00am-12:01pm EDT

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plumbing problem. i paid off some debt and i still have debt. i want to work. once you do get a job, it takes about three months before you can get paid. i'm in limbo. i'm in jeopardy am i going to lose my house or car. i understand that it is a hardship. .... >> that's it for this edition of "washington journal." another comes your way 7:00 tomorrow. we now go to the house of epresentatives. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's room, washington, d.c., october 9, 2013. i hereby appoint the honorable chris collins to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, john a. boehner,
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speaker of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the order of the house of january 3, 2013, the chair will now recognize members from lists submitted by the majority and minority leaders for morning hour ebate. the chair will alternate recognition between the parties with each party limited to one hour and each member other than the majority and minority leaders and the minority whip each, to five minutes but in no event shall debate continue beyond 11:50 a.m. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. thompson, for five minutes. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, try and leave this world a little better than you found it, those were the words of robert powell, founder of the world scouting movement. this was a message to all scouts that was found among his papers after his passing in
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1941. i'm a scouter, mr. speaker. it's part of who i am both as an american and an elected official proudly representing pennsylvania's fifth district. this is part of scouting principles, to always leave the campsite cleaner than when you found it. it's about service, serving others and it rings true in the debate taking place in washington. today we are saddling future generations with mountains of debt. we've made promises we cannot keep. we're leaving the next generation worse off than our own. we face a nation with grave challenges, challenges that aren't being addressed. the fact of the matter is that congress has yet to deal with the real drivers of our debt, a large portion of which is health care costs. mr. speaker, i don't care who won the white house or which party holds majority in congress. why? because not until we actually tackle the tough issues, the tough challenges can we honestly say that congress or the house is doing what's right
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for the country? right now we are making necessary progress. not on our budget and deficits, not on our long-term debt, not on bringing down the cost of health care. though we have made some proimpress on spending, we are nowhere -- progress on spending, we are nowhere we need to be. we are leaving the system worse than when we found it. here are two letters from my constituents that my office has received. tina from jefferson county, pennsylvania, writes, and i quote, please do not vote in any way to continue funding the affordable care act. it in no way improves the situation of the average american. yes, it provides another option for health insurance, but the rates are no more affordable than the private insurance and therefore if a person cannot afford the private insurance, there's no way they will be able to afford the government plan. in addition, it places further strain on the system and will cause more shutdowns of hospitals, cause physicians to leave the system and crowd our emergency departments, end quote. kathryn from due -- dubois,
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wrote, i found out from my employer they may provide a lesser form of health care due to the no cadillac plan. they understandably want to avoid penalty from providing a good plan. this seems unfair to me as if we're being penalized for working and have a good employer. if they're willing to have a good health plan, why should they lessen their coverage? i'm very distraught about many of the layers of the health care plan that are starting to come to light. i don't know if anything can be done, end quote. while i cannot stand idle as congress acts, like it's solving problems when in fact it's failing to tackle the tough issues -- health being one of them. the government shutdown is unacceptable. however, each day we stall and fail to deal with these challenges, the worse it gets for the next generation. the real debate should be about how do we set a course of long-term job growth? not until then will i be
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satisfied. it should be about addressing the challenges. not until then will i be satisfied. it's trying to leave this world a little better than when we found it. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized -- the gentleman yields. the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland, mr. hoyer, for five minutes. mr. hoyer: thank you, mr. speaker. the previous speaker said that the shutdown should be unacceptable. i agree with that. and we could all within the xt half an hour vote to make the unacceptable, not the policy that we are pursuing. mr. speaker, our government has now been shut down for over a week, and the american people are looking to congress for solutions, not spend. thousands of dedicated federal employees here but more
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protuesdayly around the country continue to be furloughed without pay -- protuesdayly around the -- profusely continue to be furloughed without pay. they continue to do this until we repeal the affordable care act, a demand that has nothing to do with keeping our government open. debate about the affordable care act is legitimate. there are people who disagree with it and people who agree with it. but holding ransom the people's government is and should be, as the previous speaker said, unacceptable. americans are tired, i'm tired. i think most members are tired of hearing the same rhetoric from politicians over and over. instead, they want real solutions that can restore fiscal sanity, end the
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irrational sequester, which hal rogers, the chairman of the appropriations committee, conservative republican from kentucky, says does not work and cannot work and break the cycle of manufactured crisises that do nothing to help our economy and in fact are doing it great harm. so the question, mr. speaker, we must ask ourselves is -- how do we reach a solution? how can this congress achieve the big balanced deal that our constituents from us? first and foremost, we must end the shutdown. mr. speaker, 200 democrats, we have a vacancy, 200 democrats will vote this very day, this very hour to open the government. that means, mr. speaker, we only need 18 republicans. the previous speaker said it's
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unacceptable where we are, we can change it and we can change t within the hour with only 18 republicans joining 200 democrats to say let the people's government be open. let the people's government be serving them. first and foremost, mr. speaker, we must end this shutdown and take action to prevent the united states from defaulting on its bills for the first time in history. a solvent nation should not be taken hostage to accomplish an objective. once these immediate threats are removed, congress should then go -- should then vote to go to conference on the differences which are legitimate between our two budgets. republicans have refused for the last six months in the house and in the senate to go to conference.
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the speaker talks about negotiation. that is where you do it. that is the mechanism that is set up under our democracy to resolve differences. go to conference. there we can have an opportunity to agree on a comprehensive balance plan to put our country on a fiscally sustainable path, not for the next week, the next month, the next 180 days but for decades to come. and if we do that, our economy will explode, jobs will be created and americans will again feel good, not only about their country but about their congress. the shutdown and the threat of default are standing in the way of a real negotiation process for a long-term solution. democrats, i say, mr. speaker, are ready to sit down and talk with our republican colleagues about a long-term agreement. we know that will require tough
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decisions, but republicans should not demand their own policies as ransom required to reopen the government and make sure america pays its bills. democrats have already made the difficult choice to accept the republicans' preferred budget level for the short-term funding bill. how do i know it's their preferred funding bill? because they voted on it and sent it to the senate, mr. speaker. and the senate said we will accept your number and they sent it back here and my republican colleagues will not say yes to their own number. after we take the republican number to open up government, go to conference, have discussions, a big and balanced agreement on the budget and on getting our debt under control will require real compromise
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and difficult decisions. my colleagues, we should have the wisdom and, yes, the courage to make them. and if we do, future generations will thank us. i continue to believe, mr. speaker, that there is a bipartisan majority of members in this house who are ready to work in good faith towards achieving such an agreement. my observation, however, is after 33 years in this body that there is a small faction on the republican side of the aisle. it may be 50, it may be 60 that is holding captive the 170 of their colleagues who want to make sense and move forward. i hope that speaker boehner will take the important steps necessary to enable those negotiations to begin by allowing a vote on the senate's bill at the house number to reopen government and another one on a clean measure to prevent an unthinkable and economically catastrophic
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default. once those occur, mr. speaker, we'll be able to resume work on achieving real and lasting results for the american people when it comes to our long-term fiscal health. mr. speaker, mr. cantor, i would hope that the majority leader, mr. speaker, would bring the bill to open our government, the people's government, to the floor this day and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california, mr. mcclintock, for five minutes. mr. speaker, this october fiscal crisis is punctuated by three developments that are becoming increasingly obvious and disturbing. the first is the refusal of the senate and the president to resolve their differences with the house through negotiations on compromise on the bill that
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would actually fund the government and end this shutdown. in recent days, senior administration officials have said they don't care how long the shutdown lasts because they're winning politically and that the president would rather the nation default than negotiate with the house. our form of government cannot operate in such a manner. congress is a bicameral legislature. that means two houses that are specifically designed to have a different perspective on issues. the two houses of congress were designed to disagree. the only way a bicameral legislation -- legislature can possibly function is through each house exercising its own best judgment on a given issue and then coming together and meeting to isolate their differences and resolve them through negotiation and compromise. the conference process of congress has evolved over centuries.
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it's very effective at resolving the differences between the two houses, but it takes two houses to operate it and the senate is refusing to do so. this malfunction is at the very heart of our stalemate. the second development is the deliberate decision by the administration to amplify the public's suffering and inconvenience during this stalemate. this government's gone through 18 shutdowns now in the past 37 years, but never has a president barricaded open air venues like national memorials. in fact, he's forebid the use of turnouts on public roads that offer passerbies distant views of mount rushmore and yosemite. he's ordered businesses to close just because they lease land from the federal government. he's even tried to close the atlantic ocean to florida fishermen. in the past, presidents have
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done everything they could to minimize the impacts of shutdowns. this president is going to ridiculous extremes to maximize the suffering that people must endure. one park ranger told a report, quote, we've been told to make life as difficult for people as we can, end quote. and then he added, it's disgusting. and when this house has passed stopgap measures to minimize these impacts, the president and the senate have summarially rejected them. and then the rapidly unwrapping of obamacare. as it's been rolled out, americans have found out that their health insurance rates have skyrocketed or lost their health insurance entirely or having their hours cut back at work. it's clear that the americans public is not buying these brokered policies. 170,000 people visited the maryland exchange looking for affordable insurance since it opened more than a week ago, but only 326 have actually
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bought these plans, less than 2%. . people are required by law to purchase your product, you open for business, and 99.8% of the customers who walk into your store walk out again without bike your product. do you think you have -- without buying your product. do you think you have a problem? we can't pretend this isn't happening. millions of americans right now are losing their health plans and not finding affordable replacements. this matter must be resolved and it must be resolved now. this government only exists with the consent of the governed. when it deliberately goes out of its way to maximize the pain and suffering of the american people in this crisis, it jeopardizes that consent. this matter must be resolved, and it must be resolved now. and this government is simply not designed to function with one party refusing to talk to the other, with one house refusing to resolve the
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differences that divide it from the other. this simple failure is at the heart of our nation's distress and it, too, must be resolved and it must be resolved now. we are now five years into this administration. they have not been happy ones for our nation. but now we have arrived at a crisis. more precisely at three crises. one that's costing millions of americans the health plans they liked and were told they could keep. a second and the relationship of this government to the people. and a third in the basic function of our fundamental constitutions. happily the constitution's framers gave us all of the tools necessary to resolve these crises except for one. and that one is what linkon called the better angels of our nature. only we can appeal to those angels and we must do so before more harm befalls our country. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from oregon, mr. blumenauer, for five minutes.
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mr. blumenauer: mr. speaker, today's the ninth day of the republican shutdown. what started as a tantrum against the affordable care act to defund it, then morphed into a demand to play it for a year, now it's really an open assault on our system of government. unless a fanatic minority holding john boehner and the american people hostage get their way, they will continue to inflict unnecessary pain on hundreds of thousands of our employees and on the american public. now there are employs -- ploys to wreck the goebel economy by threatening -- global economy that america will not pay its bills. make no mistake, this is an assault on our system of government unlike anything we have seen before. we must stop them now. united in the belief that there are some lines we are not going to cross. there will be no weapons on the floor of the house. and no willful damage to the american people.
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what if these fanatics have their tactics used against them? what if democrats and speak her pelosi demanded that the disastrous war in iraq stopped, and if it didn't we would wreck the american economy? that our deeply felt concerns about preparing for climate change and global warming are nonnegotiable. what if senator chris murphy, who had 26 innocent children and their teachers massacred in his district, what if he sad, enough, unless we get background checks for purchasers of guns to make sure that unfit people can't get them, something that 90% of the american people agree with, unless i get that, i'm going to shut down the government. can you imagine the howls of outrage?
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there is a tremendous disconnect here. one glaring symbol of the disconnect can be found in the subbasement of the rayburn office building, the house gym. now, make no mistake. everywhere i have worked i have started fitness programs for all our employees. they save money. they improve productivity. they can even save lives. i helped start a fitness program for our employees here on capitol hill. if anything it may be more important for people in congress who are leading a crazy, unhealthy lifestyle, and can seldom get together and interact like human beings. for 17 years this is where i have tried to start every single day, to exercise, to enjoy bipartisan camaraderie, an island in this storm of capitol hill. it's convenient to be able to
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shower there instead of at home. it's important. it's very important. but it's not essential. i had somebody argue with me yesterday that it doesn't cost that much because we pay dues. we have an access key that lets us in. and there aren't any staff members there now. well, that's true. doesn't cost very much. but it costs. the electricity, hot water, towels. they are not provided by gym fairies, they are provided by taxpayers. and the same is true for countless facilities across america. closed by the senseless republican shutdown. in fact, since we decided that we are going to pay all the employees when it's over, we are paying them not to work, and it's costly not to collect fees, you can make a better argument for restoring those services than you can for the house gym. some of the most fanatic about inflicting unnecessary pain on
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the american public are regulars. enjoying our house gym while the staff gym is closed. mr. speaker, if you and the house republicans are serious and not cynical about the shutdown, then shut down the house gym until this madness ends. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the chair recognizes the gentleman from ohio, mr. gibbs, for five minutes. mr. gibbs: thank you, mr. speaker. like myself and many americans are very frustrated over the inaction of congress if we don't get this work done, but let's look back over what's happened in the last week or so. the house republicans, we have sent bills over to the democrat-controlled senate to open the government, to run the government, to fund the government. we sent starting from delaying obamacare, which most americans have serious problems with, to other bills and i want to talk about the latter two we sent.
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one was to fund the government completely until december 15, but also with two exceptions, the one exception is that members of congress and the president would live by the same rules under obamacare that all americans have to do. let's -- exception is on obamacare, we need to delay those rules and move on. people talk about the status quo in american history here. the status quo, if you vote for a clean c.r., you want the status quo to remain the same. that means unemployment stays where it is. force americans into part-time work. we need structural changes to underlying problems. we need to address debt that keeps going up. the president yesterday in his news conference talked about raising the debt ceiling doesn't increase fend spendingle of well, i wish the president would answer to me when he took office
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the debt was $10 trillion. now it's approaching $17 trillion. how does not raising the debt ceiling not increase the debt? you know we talk about -- president talks about it's unprecedented that the -- talking about the debt ceiling and having negotiations would be unprecedented if we do that. ronald reagan and speaker tip o'neill did it. bill clinton did it. president obama did in 2011, the budget control act. it's not unprecedented. and interestingly the time the president has been forced to negotiate is times when we have crisis where we have had to address and the president did that in 2011. if obamacare is so good and the president's signature piece of legislation, he ought to be the first one to sign up for it. i believe the first family ought to be first in line to sign up for obamacare. you know what? the president of the united states is exempt from obamacare. doesn't make sense. he ought to have to live by his own bills he supports and passed through. i talk about compromise.
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i'm sure the president doesn't watch fox news, but i think bill o'reilly has a compromise that makes sense. the individual mandate. that was one of the things we put in there to say in one of those bills, we said, delaying the individual mandate for one year. the president delayed the employer mandate for one year. it only makes sense, especially when you see so many people having trouble signing up, getting on, and all the uncertainty, we get reports now premiums going through the roof. hire -- higher deductibles, higher co-pays. we need to delay. one of the bills we said in the bill was delay the individual mandate for one year. that was rejected by the senate. also we sent a bill over there to say, ok, if you don't take that, let's just go to conference. let's sit down and talk. let's negotiate. but i think the compromise bill o'reilly puts out on fox news the other night makes sense. make the individual mandate voluntary. don't force people to go on
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this, delay it for one year. don't force people to go on this and risk their privacy concerns, force them to pay higher insurance premiums for insurance they may not need. let's see what happens. and obamacare moves through, i think that's a compromise that makes sense and the president ought to look at that and talk about that. but in order to do that he he needs to come to the table. he needs -- he needs to come to the table. he needs to sit down and talk to republicans and negotiate. that's how our system of government was set up. the founders had that right, nuclear weapons divided government. i encourage the president not -- this morning there are reports that the president is inviting the house senate democrats to the white house later today and supposedly we are going to get an invitation here soon. that's encouraging. i hope he's serious about sitting down and working out the differences. we have to get back to the work of the american people expect us to do. i look forward to sitting down with the president and our
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leadership and work through these problems and get the government going. but we can't do it without sitting down and talking and making sense because we were elected to do that. thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from florida, ms. wilson, for five minutes. ms. wilson: i ask unanimous consent to address the house. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. speaker, it has been more than 1,000 days since i arrived in congress, and republican leaders have still not allowed a single vote on serious legislation to address
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our jobs crisis. instead this house has voted 46 times to defund or delay health care for people who desperately need it. wasting precious time. wake up, republicans. obamacare is not only the law of the land, it's not only a safeguard to save the millions of people with pre-existing conditions, it is an essential tool to give people the economic security and purchasing power they need to revive our economy. people need obamacare. president obama cares about the american people and we should, too. even a tea party member of my
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freshman class of 2010 understood this when he stood and expressed his hopes of being ble to receive federally subsidized health coverage immediately upon taking office. he was incensed. he couldn't wait 30 days. for he acts like as if he wantses his constituents to wait forever. people all over the world are amazed that we do not have universal health care like they do. we are the world power and they're saying you don't have universal health care in america? mr. speaker, people want health care, people deserve health care, and, mr. speaker, people
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want jobs. no one wants to revive the great recession by playing dangerous games with our economy. you know what? that's precisely what this house is doing. this is scary. . i'm nervous. i'm stunned by the insensitivity. the whole world economy rests on america's treasury bonds. let me repeat. the whole world economy rests upon america's treasury bonds. mr. speaker, when we play with fire on the debt ceiling, you threaten to burn down the budget, mutual funds, small and stock port foal
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yoles, just consider what happened the last time republicans simply to breach the debt ceiling in 2011. retirement assets plummeted and homeowners saw big hikes in their monthly payments. that was just for talking about breaching the debt ceiling. independent analysts have concluded that a debt default would be as bad as the global financial crisis of 2008. ' ter that crisis, americans savings lost decades of worth in their homes and 401-k's. we're still living with massive unemployment from that crisis till this day. while some members of congress may like to behave as though we moved past our unemployment crisis, it's a different story when you look at african-americans. 13% unemployment. the hispanic community, 9.3%
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unemployment. and the youngest workers, 22% unemployment. across america, there are nearly 12 million people officially out of work and tens of millions more who are underemployed or who have simply given up looking. america's public sector workers are teachers, firefighters, construction workers, public health workers, medical researchers, public defenders, bus drivers, social workers and police have already suffered painfully. first, under the sequester, and now under the shutdown. but a default would devastate every worker and every retiree. it would hit over 401-k, every mutual fund, every stock portfolio, every mortgage payment and every student loan and every business loan. it's impossible to physically
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conservative pro-business. it's time for congress to pass a clean debt ceiling bill. mr. speaker, open the government. mr. speaker, raise the debt ceiling. mr. speaker, let's begin to address our real crisis, jobs, jobs, jobs. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from north carolina, mr. jones, for five minutes. mr. jones: mr. speaker, thank you very much. i have been listening to both sides in this very important debate of the future of america and where we are going and how we're going to pay for the future of this country. what is amazing to me is that president karzai of afghanistan , i don't believe he's furloughed one person. we are furloughing u.s. government workers all across this nation, but mr. karzai continues to get his millions and millions of dollars. mr. speaker, this is unnecessary. i don't know why we in congress continue to fund a war where we
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can't even get an accountability from the inspectors. it makes no sense. i want to read three paragraphs from an article i read this weekend called "the forgotten war." one of the paragraphs, and i quote, but even when the war ends and americans have forgotten it altogether, it won't be over in afghanistan. obama and karzai continue negotiating toward a bilateral strategic agreement to allow the united states to keep at least nine of the biggest bases it built and several thousand trainers an undoubtedly special operation forces in afghanistan seemingly forever. another of the paragraphs, it won't be over in the united states either. for american soldiers who took part in it and returned with catastrophic -- excuse me -- physical and mental injuries and for their families, the battles are just beginning. for american taxpayers, the war
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will continue at least until mid century. think of all the families of the dead soldiers to be compensated for their losses, all the brain damage veterans at the v.a. hospitals, think of the outgoing costs of their drugs and prosthetics and benefits. medical and disability costs alone are projected to reach $754 billion. not to mention the health -- the hefty retirement pay of all those generals who issued all those reports of progress as they so ambitiously fought more than one war leading nowhere. leading nowhere. mr. speaker, just this past weekend, we had five americans brought back in flag-draped coffins. i doubt sincerely if many people in this country read that report that five americans came back in a flag-draped
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coffin. i do not understand why this congress continues to have these difficulties of trying to fix our own problems in our own country but don't worry about the waste, fraud and abuse and more important, the loss of limb and body and heart that our kids have been given in afghanistan. i will close by reading one more paragraph from the article called "the forgotten war." will the united states still be meddling in afghanistan 30 years from now? if history has any guide, the answer is -- is any guide, the answer is yes. and if history is any guide, three decades, americans will have only the haziest idea of why. i can only say to the families of those five patriots who came back in a flag-draped coffin, may we never forget, may we
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never forget that the war in afghanistan continues to go on and on and probably will for the next 30 years. come on, congress. let's get together. let's stop spending money in afghanistan. more importantly, stop sending our young men and women to give their limbs and their life. and mr. speaker, in closing, as i always do, i ask god to please bless our men and women in uniform. i ask god to please bless the families of our men and women in uniform. i ask god in his loving arms to hold the families who have given a child dying for freedom in afghanistan and iraq. i ask god to bless us in the house and senate, bless the president. and god please, god, please, god, please continue to bless america and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from illinois, mrs. bustos, for five minutes.
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mrs. bustos: i ask unanimous consent to address the house. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mrs. bustos: i rise today to once again speak out about the human consequences and the reckless and irresponsible government shutdown. today it's day nine. and to this needless -- into this needless frustration and madness. last night i spent time on the telephone talking to a woman that i'm here to represent. she lives in a small town called roseville, illinois. it's in the southern part of my congressional district. er name is sher' lei -- sherry leif. and she is a long-term employee f the food sector. she spent most of her house in the beef slaughterhouse. and she is an inspector in a pork and poultry processing
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plant. this is not a glamorous job. she's the first to admit that. but she works very hard every day, and she takes great pride in the fact that she is making re that our food is safe and wholesome. she has four children and six grandchildren and she says she keeps them in mind and she keeps all the children in mind throughout this country as she's inspecting these plants and make sure, again, that this meat goes out safe and wholesome. so today she'll drive -- she has a very long commute. she'll spend most of that time n a cooler that's at most 45 degrees, and i would call someone like sherry leif an unsung hero because without people like sherry who, again, are not receiving their pay right now, our food supply would be in jeopardy. so she's going into work every day not taking home a paycheck, and she's worried at a deep
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level about her family's future. she has a husband named thomas who is a school bus driver and brings home $800 a month. this is not enough for sherry and thomas leif to pay their bills. so they've already discussed what this government shutdown means to their family. step one for them, if the paycheck doesn't come, is they will tap into their reserves, into their savings. step two if it leads to that, they will have to go into further credit card debt. this is not what we should be doing to people like sherry and thomas leif. this is not what we should be doing to the hardworking federal employees who want nothing more than to do a good job, go to work and receive fair pay. but this is the way it's been for nine days now. heard our congressman steny
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hoyer speak a half an hour ago now talking about we have an answer to this right now. we have enough republican votes and we have enough democratic votes today, within the hour, as he explained it, to get the government up and running again. we could immediately, immediately today provide relief for people like sherry and thomas leif, by reopening the government right here and right now. we have a bipartisan path to do that. i would say let's do it, let's get at it today and put these good, hardworking people back to work and receiving a fair pay. mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas, mr. poe, for five minutes. mr. poe: mr. speaker, the fact that we are here today to debate raising america's debt limit is a sign of leadership
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failure. it is a sign that the united states government cannot pay its debt. it is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our government's reckless fiscal policies. that was a statement by senator barack obama in 2008. driving up our national debt from $5 trillion to $9 trillion is irresponsible. it is unpatriotic. once again, senator barack obama. increasing america's debt weakens us domestically and internationally. leadership means that the buck stops here. instead, washington is shifting the burden of bad choices onto the backs of our children and our grandchildren. america has a debt problem, and
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a failure of leadership. americans deserve better. i therefore intend to oppose the effort to increase america's debt limit. senator barack obama, 2006. but that was then. this is now. the president last week said without an increase in the borrowing limit, the whole world will have problems. in other words, we're all going to die. the sky's going to fall unless the united states raises the debt limit. seems to be a little bit inconsistent on positions regarding the debt limit. of course now the debt limit is up to $17 trillion, double what he talked about several years ago. so we find ourselves in a situation where the president's
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attitude seems to be, i will not negotiate except with the russians, the syrians, the iranians about what's going on overseas, but i will not negotiate, i will not talk to the house of representatives about american issues. it would seem to me, mr. speaker, that things that are happening in the united states are really just as important as what's happening in russia, syria and iran, but maybe not to the administration. the administration, rather being shutdown and lockdown for political reasons than talk, gotiate, compromise, to even listen. it seems the administration is in bunker mentality while the united states is in economic turmoil. and where are we? we are at a situation where there is no talking, and it seems to be, the administration says it's our fault the
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president won't talk to us. the president has to blame others on bad things that happen and takes credits for things that are always good, but in event -- so i re-emphasize the president's own words about why we should not raise the debt limit. it is reckless, it is irresponsible, it is unpatriotic, it hurts us domestically and internationally, it's a failure of leadership and americans deserve better. i agree with that. since the president seems to be inconsistent about his position, why doesn't he just talk to us? talk to us about the debt limit, the continuing resolution, about america's issues, america's policies, america's problems? and at least acknowledge that the house of representatives exists. so i would suggest, mr. speaker, when you get to talk to the president, because i don't get to talk to him, that he would
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come out of the white house and meet with the people's house and quit fiddling around and start talking to us. so we can solve this problem today. that's just the way it is. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from ohio, ms. aptur, for five minutes. ms. kaptur: thank you. mr. speaker, the majority party's latest idea is to create a supercommittee to figure out how to reverse their republican shutdown of government. frankly, congress doesn't need another committee. it only needs the speaker to unlock the tea party chains put on regular committee order and function in this house. let the appropriations committee
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do its job as mandated by our constitution. it can and will get the job done. though it is not my first preference, we can begin by allowing a vote on a clean continuing resolution, that is allowing the senate bill, which contains the republican budget mark of $986 billion to move forward. though the democrats have expressed deep dismay at that number as it is not what democrats have sought in discretionary accounts, it speaks loudly to which party is wig to compromise -- willing to compromise. if the majority party does not like the affordable care act, use your real power in the regular committee structure that you control to change it. but closing down the entire government is a sledgehammer when what you need is merely a needle and thread. meanwhile, the republican shutdown is wreaking havoc on our economy. more and more working americans
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and businesses are getting singed. how could this be good? the republican shutdown costs the american people $12.5 million each hour and $300 million a day. as of today the g.o.p. shutdown has already cost the american taxpayers over $2 billion. is that responsible gotcht -- government? the republican shutdown has caused rising uncertainty about our economy. it has already placed a down draft on our economic markets and job creation. yesterday the dow jones industrial average fell another 160 points. this is part of a recent precipitous slide which has seen the financial market lose nearly 400 points this month alone. overall the trend is strongly in the wrong direction, down. the international monetary fund as a result of the republican shutdown cut its growth forecast full economy by four
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three percentage points. this surely will cost the american economy more jobs going forward. the sapping of u.s. growth will be felt globally as u.s. economic sluggishness impacts other nations. global markets continue to fall as well wondering what will happen to the value of our treasury bonds? chaos and uncertainty trigger poor markets. we sure don't need any more of that medicine. there are over 800,000 federal workers who have been furloughed as a direct result of the shutdown. they are worrying about whether they can pay their bills, pay their mortgage. nasa, for example, had to furlough 97% of its more than 18,000-person work force due to the closing of the government. at nasa's johnson space center in houston, only 100 of 3,150 civil servants have not been furloughed. an additional 10,000 contractors with the johnson space center will face being furloughed. according to a local fox
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affiliate, the nasa gland research center in brook park, ohio, near cleveland, which i represent, has essentially furloughed nearly all its ,000 employees at nasa's key propulsion center. this absolutely punches down the local economy as well as national. the republican shut down has also caused many more contractors who do detailed work for our government to lose their jobs. defense contractors lying boeing and lockheed martin have had to furlough thousands of employees because the shutdown has halted awards and payments to those companies. the republican shutdown hurts government agencies and weakens our national security. there are currently no death benefits given to families of soldiers killed in action. medical treatment for those in the military has been scaled back. and furloughs are creating backlogs for v.a. disability claims. mr. speaker, just bring the clean continuing resolution that has the republican budget number
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in it to a vote. reopen our government. use the regular committees to work out any difficulties you have with the affordable care act. and please, put america's economy back on an even keel. mr. speaker, i yield back my remaining time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new mexico, mr. pearce, for five minutes. mr. pearce: i request unanimous consent to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. very rce: words are powerful and words are important. i hear the words from our president and realize that he understands the importance of words also. in the past he's talked about debt. borrowing, and spending, but now he talks about obligations because he understands that the debt to the american public is a
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four-letter word. he doesn't want to be tagged with the fact he's asking for more debt. so now it's obligations, that's the word that has cleaned up the concept that we are simply borrowing against our future. but even the word borrowing needs to be looked at. but that assumes we have the credit to borrow with. and the truth is no nation can lend us the kind of deficits that we are running right now so we are actually printing the money, but even the word printing has been changed in washington. now it's quantitative easing. it just sounds so much better. printing sounds so crass to the american public. who might be worried about what's happening to their savings accounts while washington is printing money. the word negotiation is a word that the president is familiar with. he did it two years ago when we reached this exact same point. both sides came to the table to negotiate and we wound up with a
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budget that was not as extremely overdrawn as we had faced before. that's the power of negotiations. but now the word negotiation is taken out of the president's vocabulary and he declares that he's being held hostage. oh, really? this thing he calls being held hostage is actually the american way. it's what our founding fathers wanted. they came here and set up a system with a president and two congresses and two different parties, and those parties would sometimes have all the power and sometimes they would share the power. this president says he's being held hostage by the system. that means he doesn't believe in the balance of powers that the electorate cast in the last election. he declares over and over that the election is done. i was elected.
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the same people that elected him chose to put republicans in power in the house of representatives. i think they did that because they were afraid of this debt, deficit, borrowing, and spending. we are told that we should have a clean c.r. there's nothing clean about sacrificing the future of our children and grandchildren. that's what the president wants. a c.r. where he can spend what he wants to spend without negotiateations -- negotiations on anything. we actually in the house submitted four different plans before this shutdown occurred. those plans were just summarily lee jected by the senate -- rejected by the senate, waived off. not even considered. yet we find our friends declaring this to be the republican shutdown. not that both houses failed to come to an agreement, and the
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white house failed to sit down and negotiate. they just weren't going to be held hostage. so now then we need a clean c.r. according to some, and we need a -- need to stop this republican shutdown. words are very powerful. no longer do we talk about spending in washington. we talk about investing. we are investing the american public's money. we are investing it in things like studies of the sexual habits of the fruit fly in tijuana or wherever. debt is indeed a four letter word. we are finally led to believe that default will occur immediately. that we somehow won't pay obligations. that the american people need to understand that they are still paying their taxes every day and those taxes come to washington. that's about $2.5 trillion a
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year. if we do not extend the debt ceiling any higher, then what washington is going to have to do is it's going to have to prioritize. it's going to decide which of its expenses to pay. the constitution demands that we pay our obligations. it says we can't default on those. washington would have to do the same thing every american family does. it will have to prioritize its expenses if we do not extend the debt ceiling. so chaos will not rein. we simply have to live within our means. that's what every american family has to do. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee, for five minutes. ms. jackson lee: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. jackson lee: let me first of
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all say good morning to my colleagues and start with a thank you to president obama for his invitation to the white house, to all members of congress, in quite a contrast to the representations of the president's lack of involvement. in fact, over the last four or five years this congress has failed to pass a budget with a republican majority in the house that has constantly raised the questions of how can we stop growth in america? so i thank the president first of all for his negotiating at the beginning of january, 2013, in the tax negotiation along with the acceptance of the very structured and restrictive and nongrowth number of $986 for the budgeting of this particular nation.
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we are a growing nation. we are a thriving nation. the most powerful nation in the world. and the way to go forward is to invest in america's people. so i thank the president. i thank the president for recognizing as devastating as sequester was that he was willing to see to a supercommittee that did not fulfill its responsibilities. so we are here and this is not about individual members of congress. it is about the american people. it is about the 29-year employee in the dallas-fort worth area that spoke eloquently to the fact that combined with military service she desired to be at work. she enjoyed working with her young child an being -- and being at a school, but she wanted to help americans. she's not able to go to work. it speaks to this question of the willy-nilly structure that the republicans have constructed. i use the term martial law for those who want to understand it
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better, we were speaking of the martial rule. so it's martial law on this floor, but a martial rule that we are using means that whatever's thrown down on the floor, whatever legos is thrown down on the floor to be picked up, that's how we are running this government. and so the words clean bill is not a naughty word. it means that we want to fulfill the ability to fund the entire government. not to leave out the snap and w.i.c. program or school food programs that are suffering. not to leave out rural development or commodity future training commission, centers for disease control. and because we don't have those staff persons, america suffers. i understand senator mccain's frustration on the floor of the united states senate because i went to the floor yesterday in the early morning hours to express my pain for the families who have lost their loved ones in afghanistan. young men and young women, and
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to be able to be told because of our government shutdown that their memorial service benefits could not be had, and i planned the induction of a bill, creded -it-ceded to the bill now on the floor, now we'll pick to help them. i indicated yesterday in a letter to the secretary that he should immediately provide them with their funds. it was eligible under a particular law, because we all come together around that issue. we are pained because of the loss of those loved ones of those family members. so, mr. speaker, this is not about us and i continue to say that we are not doing it the right way. because my vietnam veteran in houston, mr. simons, richard simons, who came to a veteran center, was turned away yesterday. homeless veterans in houston who need the veteran service centers are being turned away as of wednesday because all of these veteran centers are being
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closed down. the farmer in iowa, john gilbert, has 770 acres, he's working every day but he can't get his agriculture resources because the department of agriculture is shut down. a family resource center that's dealing with family domestic violence is no more because they cannot get their federal dollars. then, of course, the u.s. attorney's office is seeing 4,000 u.s. attorneys shut down. 3,000 lockheed employees laid off. 3,000 nasa employees laid off. and so i believe that it is important that we recognize that we are not here for ourselves. we're here for the families whose loved ones layed down their life in afghanistan. and where we call it a -- laid down their life in afghanistan. and whether we call it a clean bill, it needs to be put on the floor of the house because we cannot run the government by playing legos. we can't throw sticks on the ground, playing those games, saying whatever happens it will happen. we have to help richard simons.
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we got to help the veterans going to these closed centers. and we got to make sure that we understand that a president should be judged for his leadership in this country and not on where he came from, what he looks like. we have to be able to work with all people in america and all the people are being harmed. mr. speaker, i ask this one question as i go to -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. ms. jackson lee: are we going to leave homeless veterans on the streets, mr. speaker? i would hope that we'll answer that question and also pay the veterans and the families. i thank the gentleman very much. yield back. >> mr. speaker, politics is full of irony, and i believe that that is a vast understatement that's exhibited on this floor almost every day. mr. stewart: but sometimes that irony bleeds over into the absurd. and that's what we're facing today. when it comes to our president o -- who absolutely refuses to
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sit down and negotiate over the debt ceiling limit. or over the implementation of obamacare. or over the continuing resolution or frankly over anything else. think about that. the president of the united states is unwilling to even sit down, to have any negotiations, to have even a conversation with the speaker of the house. the president likes to say, i won the election. and he likes to remind us that elections have consequences. but i would remind the president that i won my election as well, and so did 233 other house republicans. i represent more than 700,000 people. those 233 house republicans represent more than 150 million people. they expect certain things of us. they expect us to represent
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them. they expect us to fight for those values that we promised that we would. i can't abandon those values. i owe it to my constituents. i owe it to my family. i owe it to my nation. i owe it to myself to continue to fight for those values that i think helped make this nation the greatest nation that it is. the president is the president of the united states. he's not just the president of the democratic party. he's not just the president of the states in which he won. he is the president of the united states, and he owes it to the americans to be willing to sit down and to try to negotiate when we come in to a conflict such as we have now. yeah, we got great challenges before us, but we can work through these. we always have before. we can find a way to work together.
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republicans and democrats have been working through their differences for generations, but we can only do that if we're willing to sit down and to talk with each other. we can only do that if we're willing to be respectful of the deeply held positions that each of us hold. we can only do that if we're willing to work together for the betterment of this nation. which brings me to the debt limit. it is like a dark looming cloud that hangs over us now. now, we can't ignore it. we can't precontinued that it doesn't matter. -- pretend that it doesn't matter. we can't pretend that it's not important. so like others, i'd like to quote from one of the great -- or who's considered one of the great political leaders of this century. and i quote now when i say, increasing america's debt weakens us domestically and internationally. leadership means that the buck
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stops here. instead, washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and our grandchildren. america has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. americans deserve better. mr. speaker, of course, you know, i'm not quoting ted cruz or mitch mcconnell or the speaker of the house. i'm quoting a young freshman senator who's now the president of the united states who at least at one point in his career recognized the serious and the long standing threat to this nation that our rising debt is. we have the opportunity to work together now, to fix this problem. and if we can't fix it, at least we could take a meaningful step forward. i hope the president will work with us to address what he used to believe was a serious problem. but i believe it starts with one thing, sitting down ogether and talking to work it
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out. the american citizens, all of us deserve a president who's willing to lead. the american people deserve a president who's willing to talk. yeah, we live in a day where there are policy and political differences, but that's always been the case. from the birth of our nation, it has always been such. we are a nation where ideas and principles sometimes come into conflict, but the american people deserve a president who understands that negotiating is part of the process. and i pray that the president will sit down and talk with us now. and with that, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from california, ms. speier, for five minutes. mr. speaker, i have
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a very simple message. let your people go. e american people are very frustrated by what we're doing here. they want us to end this shutdown. and some 70% of them don't like the way you or the republican majority are handling this crisis. so mr. speaker, if you'll just let your people go and allow us to bring a clean continuing resolution to the floor, we can end this. despite your claims to the contrary, it's clear to everyone that we have at least 17 votes required from your side of the aisle to pass the continuing resolution. so mr. speaker, why don't you just let your people go? i have a simple question for you. if you think to the contrary that the votes are not there,
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then why not put your cards on the table and allow a vote? the american people cannot afford more rounds of betting their economic future on politicses -- politicians betting on a pair and thinking they have a full white house. the american people think it's time to call your bluff. mr. speaker, let your people go. we can reopen the world war ii memorial and the v.a. today. we can ensure that all military families receive death benefits and can travel to dover air force base to receive their loved one's remains. we can end what senators on the other side of the aisle have declared, quote, shameful and embarrassing. we can end this today, mr. speaker, if you let your people go. holding back on a vote prevents the opening of life-saving clinical trials at the n.i.h.
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it prevents the opening of national parks and museums for use by families everywhere. the shutdown is costing taxpayers $12.5 million each and every hour you refuse to vote. and it's costing the american people already $2.5 billion. but don't listen to me. listen to your own caucus members. enough is enough, said one republican in the house. let's get on with the business we were sent to do. another republican agreed with him. the politics should be over, he said. it's time to legislate. another said, i'd vote for a clean c.r. because i don't think this strategy is working. and many more he canowed these sentiments -- echoed these sentiments, mr. speaker. let your people go.
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instead, you seem to be listening to a small faction in your caucus that want to, quote, win, at any cost. they say they won't be disrespected and that they need to get something out of this but don't know what it is. mr. speaker, i have -- i hope you will see what is clear to everyone around the world watching this spectacle. there are no winners. mr. speaker, let your people go. it's blackmail to shut down the government because you don't like the affordable care act. mr. speaker, listen to those blunt assessments from your own caucus who call the followers with s strategy, quote, suicide vests. traditional allies of the g.o.p., like the chamber of commerce, have said this is, quote, not in the best interests of the u.s. business community. "the wall street journal" has
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called it a kamikaze mission. and in fact, in their editorial headline they said, are the republicans nuts? another republican senator said, this strategy isn't good for america. this last comment really says it best. this is not good for america. mr. speaker, let your people go and bring a clean c.r. to a vote. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. kelly, for five minutes. mr. kelly: thank you, mr. speaker. three years ago i was elected and so were a lot of my classmates in what we termed a very fair election. and i think the issue that we all need to be concerned about right now is, it is truly unique in america that everybody's treated fairly. doesn't matter what the color
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of your skin is. doesn't matter how you worship. it doesn't matter if you even worship or don't worship. you're treated fairly. and the president has said many times, this is a country where everybody deserves a fair shot. everybody deserves a fair opportunity to rise to whatever level they can. every single american deserves to be treated fairly. and i hear that term and i hear it back and forth, batted back and forth. what is the real definition of fair? so i went to the webster's diction aer, it says fair is treating people in a way that does not favor some over others . does not treat people in a favorable way over somebody else. that is truly uniquely american. because there's very few places in the world where everybody does get treated fairly. so when i look at the affordable care act or
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obamacare, i ask myself, is this really fair? and if you look at this definition, as it goes farther down in the definition, it ives the ant nim or the -- antonym or the opposite meaning, obamacare would be the direct opposite of what fair is. is it fair to give 1,200 waivers to some and not others? is it fair to say to employers, you know what, this is a very complicated law, and it's grown so complicated, you know what, you need another year to give you a fair chance to understand what's in it? so we're going to give you a year delay. now, if you're an individual, no, you're not given that. so the question is, is it fair,
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fair to give one group something and the individual not? i don't know. i don't know that meets anybody's definition of what fair is. also, i heard secretary of health and human services sebelius ask that very same question by a journalist -- asked that very same question by a journalist. secretary sebelius, is it fair to go ahead and give employers one year to figure it out because it's so hard to understand? it's not really fair to put that kind of pressure on them. yet, with the individuals, they have to do it today. she says, no, no, no. they can opt out if they're not ready to do that. now, you have to pay a fine if you want to opt out. you have to pay a fine if you don't want to participate at all. you're held to a different set of standards than another group. so i don't know how that fits under the definition of fair. . .
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look, we can talk about this back and forth and go all day long. this is a gift. this affordable care act, is a gift that keeps giving. it's a law. that while it's giving it's also taking. it is driving our debt to an unbelievable level. the president, it's going to reduce our debt. the truth of the matter is in 10 years it adds $1.8 trillion. that's a pretty fairly heavy debt for the people to absorb. now, back home, i don't know if this lady is a republican or democrat, melissa had written me , i want you to understand how this is. this is an individual. she has two degrees. one in criminal justice, one in teaching. she couldn't get a job. so she started her own business. no government loans, who bank loans, no investors, i have grown the business over the past handful of years. i received a letter from my insurance company,et in a, no longer am i going to be covered
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after november 25, according to my letter. i run a successful small business in this economy. riley is a young girl working her way through school as a part-time cashier in a local grocery store. she makes page and paying for her own health care benefit. she got a letter saying you know what your policy you have now will go from $70 a month. it's going to triple. it's going to put a heavyweight on her in order to say -- stay covered. so we talk about fair. we talk about what's fair to everybody. not just a few but to everybody. my friends get up and they rail about what it's not doing. about how we are not treating the law fairly. the law is not treating us fairly. sadly we are in a time when americans don't expect an awful lot out of washington. in fact, it's fair to say they don't expect hardly anything out of washington. but they do expect to be treated fairly. and i would say to everybody, please, let's treat everybody the same. this is america. that's what makes us unique and
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special. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from illinois, mr. davis, for five minutes. mr. davis: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, concordia university of chicago is an american private lutheran liberal arts university located in the village of river forest, illinois, 10 miles west of downtown chicago. in 1855 lutheran ministers johann, loughner, and flishemann established a private teachers seminary in milwaukee wisconsin to train day schoolteachers for lutheran schools. in 1857, responsibility for the operation of the school was taken over by the lutheran church missouri synod. it moved the school to fort wayne, indiana. uniting it with a theological seminary which had been founded there by followers of johann
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conrad and wilhelm. in 1861 the theological seminary was moved to st. louis, missouri, and later to springfield, illinois, then back to fort wayne, indiana. in 1864. the teachers seminary was moved to addison, illinois. concordia university makes its foundation with the 1864 move to addison, illinois. originally called concordia teacher semairery, then concordia teachers college, the institution is the oldest in the concordia university system. the original building is gone, but a monument still standards on the site of the seminary in addson, illinois. in 1913, the college moved to its present campus in river forest, illinois. in 1979, the institution expanded its education centered program to become a full liberal
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arts institution and changed its name to concordia college. in 1990, having experienced a tremendous growth in its graduate official, the school recognized and changed its name to concordia university. the university was officially known as concordia university river forest until 2006 when the current name was adapted. the overwhelm university in the 10 school system to achieve the rank of top tier on "u.s. news and world report's" best college list. he they were also awarded this ranking in 2010. concordia university of chicago has a permanent and prestigious music department among schools of a similar size. however, education is still
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concordia's largest academic program. other programs include business, communications, theology, and many other undergraduate degree programs. concordia university's enrollment for 2012, 2013, academic year is 5,454 students, and many of these students plan to become church workers. i am inspired when i read the university's mission statement which is, as a distinct comprehensive university of the lutheran church missouri synod, centered in the gospel of jesus christ and based in the liberal arts. concordia university equips men and women to serve and lead with integrity, creativity, and compassion in a diverse, interconnected, and increasingly urbanized church and world.
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mr. speaker, i congratulate and salute concordia university on its 100 years of teaching and service in the chicagoland community. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. barletta, for five minutes. mr. barletta: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to honor a fallen soldier from my district and urge the passage of a bill later today to ensure that death benefits still flow to families of our military heroes despite the government shutdown. an army ranger, sergeant patrick c. hawkins, from carlyle, pennsylvania, was killed this past sunday by an i.e.d. he was on his fourth tour in afghanistan and serving as a rifleman, gun team leader, and ranger team leader when he was killed. kittingly he was tending to
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another -- fittingly he was tending to another wounded ranger when he was killed. sergeant hawkins was clearly following part of the army ranger creed which says, i will never leave a fallen comrade. mr. speaker, we should take that advice as well here in this body and not leave behind sergeant hawkins' wife of lansing, kansas, or his parents roy and sheila hawkins of carlyle, pennsylvania. here in the house we thought we had taken care of this problem by passing our pay our military act soon after the shutdown occurred. but apparently the pentagon wants to have more explicit guidance under the ability to provide death benefits to military families. let it be said loudly and clearly here in the house of representatives we will never leave a fallen comrade.
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i urge my colleagues to pass the bill to make sure that the $100,000 gratuity is paid to cover final costs for sergeant hawkins and that all of our other brave men and women in service and loved ones left behind receive what they are entitled to. i hope that the senate follows suit and that the president signs into law so that there is no further delay. may god bless sergeant patrick c. hawkins and all others like him who defend our freedoms every day. thank you. i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from alabama, mr. rooks, for five minutes. i am ooks: mr. speaker, gravely disappointed at the lengths the white house has gone
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to to manipulate american lives as they seek to coerce america's elected house of representatives into spending money america does not have on a dysfunctional socialized medicine program that does not work, that threatens american lives, and that a majority of americans do not want. congress and the white house agree on roughly 99% of federal government spending. he we should fund that 99% -- we should fund that 99%, reopen the federal government, and debate our disagreements on the remaining 1%, but the white house and senate refuse to do that. instead, president obama, senate majority leader harry reid, and their democrat allies force a federal government shutdown. they hold 99% of the federal government hostage to support their all or nothing demands. the lengths the democrats and white house will go to to manipulate american lives and
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public opinion is most disheartening. the obama administration ordered the closings of all washington, d.c. monuments, thereby denying world war ii veterans access to their memorial. never mind that in the history of all federal government shutdowns no president has ever ordered and spent taxpayer money to barricade and close washington's open air memorials. the obama administration disregarded the pay our military act and illegally ordered furloughs of roughly 400,000 department of defense civilian personnel for a week, thereby disrupting their lives and more importantly jeopardizing america's national security. the obama administration followed that up with illegally ordering furloughs for who knows how many thousands of defense contractors and their employees. never mind that in doing so the obama administration violated the pay our military act that
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president obama himself signed. an act that fully funds all defense workers and contractors who, quote, are he providing support to members of the armed forces, end quote, which by the way is all of them. yesterday america woke up to yet another political manipulation by the obama administration. america's commander in chief denied death gratuities to the families of four soldiers and a marine who were killed in afghanistan. adding insult to injury america's commander in chief refuses to pay the cost of burial expenses of our men and women in uniform who have given their lives for their country. mr. speaker, this is an outrage. it must not stand. the obama administration claims that, quote, as a result of the shutdown we do not have the legal authority to make death gratuity payments at this time, end quote. i respectfully disagree. the pay our military act
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expressly states, and i quote, there are hereby appropriated sums for fiscal year 2014 such sums as are necessary to provide pay and allowances to members of the armed forces. death benefits and burial expenses are part of our military's compensation package. a part of the quote, pay and allowances, end quote, the pay our military act says the obama administration must pay. congress should not have to pass yet another bill today to force the president to do what the law already says he should do. instead of punishing america's military by illegally furloughing defense workers and contractors, instead of dishonoring our world war ii veterans, our korean war veterans, our vietnam veterans by spending taxpayer money to barricade their memorials, by denying them access to their
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memorials, iern for a commander in chief who supports -- yearn for a commander in chief who supports our veterans and members in uniform rather than using them as pawns to be sacrificed in partisan political games. can i not help but think of the contrast between our current commander in chief and our first one. during the revolutionary war, george washington lived with his troops, fought with his troops, and sacrificed for his troops. when the continental army was faced with hardship, inadequate food and clothing, george washington reached into his own pocket and sacrificed his wealth to help the men who fought under his command. mr. speaker, i pray our current commander in chief will study and understand the graciousness, leadership, and sacrifices of george washington as he makes decisions on whether to treat our veterans, troops, and defense workers with the respect they have earned and deserve. mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. fitzpatrick, for five minutes.
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mr. fitzpatrick: mr. speaker, i rise today in strong support of legislation that will be considered on the floor of the house today, legislation that would address the unacceptable wrong of denying death benefits to families of fallen soldiers during the budget impasse. while i don't doubt that this house will pass it, i hope it's passed unanimously in the house, the american people have a right to expect that, we must consider what has led us to even have to legislatively fix such an obvious injustice. the department of defense, even during the current impasse, is spending sums in the billions of dollars. how is the death payment for members of the military not considered essential, mr. president? what was the decisionmaking process to deem the death benefits not essential, mr.
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president? who made the final call on this decision and why are you not firing that person? this follows the same pattern that we saw earlier this year when the president cut military tuition assistance. we were able to restore those needless cuts and have introduced a bill to ensure the president does not continue to play games with the tuition assistance as early reports indicate the military tuition is begin being held back from -- again being held back from families. we made a promise to our fighting men and women and to their families. mr. speaker, the house is ready to keep those promises but the president is demonstrating at best a failure to lead. at a worst bare knuckle partisanship. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from west virginia, mr. mckinley, for five minutes. mr. mckinley: i thank you, mr. speaker. the president and his allies claim that the shutdown of government is about one thing
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-- a republican obsession with obamacare. mr. speaker, they are missing the point completely. for the past three years, the house has been working to improve our economy, create private sector jobs and address barriers that inhibit economic growth. obamacare unfortunately has emerged as one of the largest challenges standing in the way of job creation. workers are having their hours cut. families and businesses are facing higher premiums. employers aren't expanding because of the uncertainty. fixing the health care law would have the quickest impact on the economy, but in fairness, we can't do that unless the other side sits down and talks to us. thus far, the senate and the president have rejected all efforts of the house and refuse to negotiate. mr. speaker, this debate should be about caring for the american people, their future and the liberties we share in
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america. we want to reopen the government and help families find jobs, but that requires that the house and the senate and the president, sitting down together and having an adult conversation about fixing our economy. mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from florida, mr. mica, for five minutes. mr. ca: thank you, speaker. s the clock ticks, the country gets closer to a time when it will run out of money. people probably couldn't understand all of the debate leading up to the implementation of obamacare just a few days ago and some of the questions in debate became blurred.
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that was one of the biggest government programs, largest spending programs probably in .he history of our nation but it sdf consequences, because -- did have consequences because you're spending more trillions of dollars, and if we're going to provide health care, we want it right. there are many americans who don't have health care, and we should assist them in a responsible fashion. the rollout has been a disaster. we're doing a hearing on that in the government reform committee. all that being said is, it's about time to pay the piper here, and i think the american people will understand and can understand that the country is close to default. the country is close to default ecause we've incurred an indebtedness that will soon exceed $17 trillion.
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that indebtedness which, again, will reach the current limit next week, they're asking for another $1 trillion, $900 billion to get us one more year. we are going to have to pay the piper. when you spend $1.5 trillion more a year the first year of the obama administration and each exceeding year over $1 trillion more than you took in, you acquire an indebtedness, going from $9 trillion when president bush left office, it will soon be $18 trillion in some six years. the most indebtedness of any nation. we can't become a greece. this is not that difficult to understand. when the government can't pay its bills, if folks think there is a temporary shutdown now, think of a permanent shutdown.
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think of going to the bank and not being able to withdraw money or you've heard not being able to obtain a mortgage, the full faith and credit of the united states of america will collapse just like when an individual spends more than he earns, he or she earns, you must pay the piper. hopefully now everyone can understand we're in that situation, we must act responsibly. republicans are not standing in the way. republicans are trying to save the day because this is coming due. this bill is due, and we must find a way to cut spending, reduce the amount of federal spending and keep the debt down. it's that simple. if you will not negotiate, if the president of the united states will not negotiate, the senate will not negotiate, you
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cannot achieve what we need to do to be responsible as stewards of the american people. one-third of f of the american government. so this isn't all our responsibility. we are trying to act responsibly, and we're asking people to come together, find a way to reduce spending in a responsible manner. if we have some problems with programs like obamacare, let's fix them. let's get the spending down. but, again, we're -- this is the time we're going to have to pay for all of these government programs for the spending that's gone on unchecked and for the debt the united states has incurred. just a final lesson, the constitution and the founders put all spending, the appropriations, funding of programs, and also the responsibility for raising taxes with this body, the house of representatives. they did so because we're
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closest to the people. we get elected every two years, and they chose to have the republicans in the majority to control the spending that went out of control, the government programs that went out of control. so that's what we're doing, what they sent us here to do, and we must do that in a responsible fashion. we're here. we've been here before the shutdown. we've asked to negotiate. we'll continue to do that. our leaders are committed to do that, to work in a responsible fashion. we have to get this right. we must pay the piper. the piper is calling our bills and our credit due. so let's join together and act responsibly. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from north carolina, ms. foxx, for three minutes ms. foxx: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, on saturday, members of the republican women's policy committee sent
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an earnest letter to senator harry reid asking him to please put aside the bipartisanship for a second and take the opportunity to enact commonsense legislation to help our kids. take up bipartisan house legislation to restore w.i.c., open n.i.h. and fund head start. senator reid has done nothing, though, and president obama said it's their way or the highway. give them everything they want or get lost. in north carolina, our w.i.c. program doesn't have sufficient funds to issue new vouchers until the senate acts. it's the senate's choice. they should do the right thing. at this point, however, the senate is rejecting common ground. senate democrats are refusing to make government work for the american people because they won't even agree to a conversation about whether all americans should be treated equally under obamacare. health care's a matter of security to many americans, and health care as we all know is
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changing drastically for next year. for many in north carolina, it's becoming more expensive. for others, their plans are being canceled. when asked why american families are being denied a one-year delay of the individual mandates so they can figure out obamacare without the threat of government penalties, the secretary of health and human services suggested that the way to, quote, opt out of the mandate was to simply allow government to levy a fine against you. that sounds like a fair choice, doesn't it? individual americans do what we want or pay an unprecedented tax on your behavior. mr. speaker, the refusal, even to acknowledge the specter of unfairness in obamacare's implementation is shocking. consider the great senate democrats are going to -- great lengths senate democrats are going to in not negotiating. senate democrats will not call a vote on legislation to fund the national institutes of health, to ensure pay for
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guardsmen and reservists, to stop veteran benefits application delays, to fully fund w.i.c., to restore head start, to restore fema or f.d.a. funding. senate democrats won't call a vote to reopen the national parks. throwing all this common ground by the wayside, it is inexcusable. the senate and the president needs to explain why their way or the highway is more important than doing their job and finding a compromise to end this shutdown. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess
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we used to call it legislating. direct quote by mitch mcconnell. yesterday, on their legislative program for a day, because it appears the speaker's only working day or an hour at a time, here's what he suggested. supercommittee, but listen to this supercommittee. they limit what we can talk about. that's a hell of a supercommittee. so basically what we've been saying is the speaker and my republican friends should take yes for an answer. we're ready to go to
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conference. we have simple, simple question. let us pay our bills. we'll negotiate on anything you want to negotiate on. we'll hear from the maryland delegation led by you know who and then we'll hear from the virginia delegation led by you'll find out. [laughter] >> good morning, everybody. we want to reopen government, we want to make sure america pays its bills and we're willing to negotiate as we have been doing in the past. for those of us in maryland, we want to reopen government so that the 130,000 federal employees who've been working in maryland can go back to work to do their job. we want to reopen government so that we reopen small business.
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all of the small businesses throughout our state who are near our military facilities that are now stressed and stretched because they don't have customers. we want to reopen government because we are home to 80 major federal agencies headquartered in maryland. serving not only maryland but serving the nation and serving the world. we are the home to the headquarters of social security. we are the home for the headquarters for medicare. we are the home for the headquarters for the national security agency, for the headquarters for the f.d.a. e work together with virginia. in western maryland, we have the federal prison. we want to reopen federal government so it serves the nation. this isn't just about federal employees. this is also about local business, and it's also had impacting the world.
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let me just talk about two agencies in maryland. let's talk about the food and drug administration, headquartered in maryland in a community called white oak. 8,500 employees work there. it is a comeback neighborhood because of the presence of d.a. working with n.i.h. working on the clinical trials for biotech products and medical sdwices -- devices. this is how it's serving the nation and serving the world. the f.d.a. has furloughed 45% of the people were furloughed. we don't have people on the job monitoring counterfeit drug imports at our border and coming from china. 40% of all the drugs taken in the united states are manufactured overseas. right now we've had to cancel inspections in china. we've had to cancel inspections
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in india. why is that so important? just a few years ago, faulty products coming in from blood thinners from china sickened 800 people and killing 81. why do drug inspectors want to be on the job ensuring the safety of the supply chain, that the drug you take will not make you die, open up f.d.a. serving the nation, serving the world. this is what we want to be able to do. [applause] and then over there in woodlawn is the social security administration and the medicare administration. though we are headquartered there, serving the nation, serving the world, there are 8,000 federal employees at those agencies that have been furloughed. that means the processing of disability checks, the processing of eligibility for social security, making sure
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that medicare's done and also the very unity that goes after waste and fraud in medicare has been furloughed. now, when you have your social security funded, it's not only in woodlawn, maryland, every social security, there are social security offices in every place, every place around the world of united states -- around the united states of america. open up the social security administration. keep the lights burning so people who've earned benefits can apply and get the right answers and making sure that those who go after fraud in the medicare program, fraud in the social security program are standing to make sure only get it. should get it that's what the social security administration is and right down the social security administration is the baltimore f.b.i. field office. i'm so proud of them for all that they do every day in
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keeping us safe, but i was particularly proud of them when they were part of a major raid in which they joined with the marshal service and rescued 105 sexually exploited children around the united states of america on a three-day effort in which the baltimore field office took part. we were able to rescue 105 sexually exploited children. children used in human trafficking. but guess what, those f.b.i. agents are working today but they're being paid in i.o.u.'s. and guess what, they don't even have in many instances gas for their tanks. f.b.i., so they might be paid by i.o.u.'s, but the gas for them to be able to use f.b.i. cars is limited to 200 miles a week. let's get gas if their tanks. let's get gas back in our government. let's get gas on the senate floor and let's keep america rolling. we want to reopen government
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and get america going. [applause] now, i'm going to sprow deuce my colleague from maryland -- introduce my colleague from maryland who's a real fighter on what our government is and should be and he'll tell you the other impacts in maryland. >> thank you very much. leader reid, first, thank you for bringing the democratic force together to underscore the urgency of speaker boehner voting and opening government. we have harmed our country. this shutdown has put america at risk and has caused harm. last week, president obama should have been in asia at the economic summit for our country to represent america for economic progress. he would have been the headliner at that economic summit. instead, president chi of china was the headliner. the international community was wondering about america. is america open for business?
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the shutdown has harmed our country. it's harmed our economy. we're coming out of a downturn in our economy. we're growing. we're starting to see the job growth. this shutdown will hurt our economic recovery. this shutdown has hurt our federal work force. 800,000 federal workers have been on furlough. more than 300,000 of that 800,000 are from this region. that's why senator mikulski and my colleagues from virginia underscore the impact it's having on our local economy. but it's not just the numbers. these are people. each one is a family. each one represents harm that's been done as a result of the shutdown. a week i talked to kayla, 15-year-old, who called my office to talk about the fear she has for her family, for both her parents are federal
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workers. and she sees the fear on her parents' ace -- family. senator mikulski talked about the furloughs at the social security administration. now, melissa explained to me that her husband had been unemployed for 2 1/2 years as a result of the downturn in the economy. now, she's furloughed just when she was helping to support her family. she says to me and she says to the american people, i've always been the primary earner up until monday. now i think, what do i do to support my family? that's are real people, not numbers. each one has been put at risk as a result of the government shutdown. it's not just the federal workers. we have now 400 that have been laid off from lockheed as a result of this shutdown in my
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state of maryland alone. small business owners who've had to close their businesses as a result of not having enough business. this is affecting employment all over. it's affecting economic growth. senator mikulski talked about the impact of different agencies. the fact that the environmental protection agency has 93% of their workers on furlough, we site n important economic in downtown baltimore, harbor point, a major economic site. it's a rcra site. they need the economic plans to -- plan signoff to go forward. that's an economic hold. that's no way to run a government. it's not just our region. as leader reid pointed out, the entire country is at risk. colorado just is starting to recover from the floods that really hurt its economy. this shutdown is having the same impact that the flood had on the economy of colorado.
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the big difference is you can't -- you got to plan for natural disasters but you can't stop them. this is a government-created problem that government needs to solve. so our message is simple. speaker boehner, take the gun out of the head of this nation. stop your tactics. open government. pay our bills and let's negotiate a budget under the normal process. democrats have asked for that for six months. we're ready to talk but first, open government, pay our bills. [applause] it's now my pleasure to bring up senator tim caine from virginia. >> well, thank you, all. i want to thank senator reid and my colleagues to share stories. any of my colleagues could do
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from in our own communities. and i want to talk about one community and one person. to start with a community, a beautiful place, many many of you know it, chincoteague, virginia, just off the eastern shore of maryland, very near maryland. it's an economy that's about fishing but also because of the national wildlife refuge and the national seashore, the main industry in chincoteague is tourism. hotels, restaurants, diners, grocery stores. it's about tourism. that's what the economy of chincoteague is about. the closure of the seashore and the closure of the wildlife refuge has completely hammered the economy of chincoteague. i've been getting calls from business owners telling me about what devastation it's brought upon chincoteague. they had a fall festival last week. for six years they worked to house. he light
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they had to close it. this week in chincoteague, they do it twice a year, they do the fall pony roundup. some of you have read mystery of chincoteague, the book. the roundup was this week. it's a fundraiser for the local volunteer fire department. but the volunteer fire department has had to cancel the roundup. and here's what they said on their webpage, senator reid. they're canceling the roundup because, quote, fall roundup has been canceled due to the childish idiotic actions of our government. that's what's happening. chincoteague is hit in another way, as senators mikulski and cardin know, the second pillar of the economy is a nasa facility five miles away. 1,000 workers and contractors there, 80% to 90% of them have been furloughed and are not working this week. why are they shut -- it is hurting chincoteague and other
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towns like chincoteague. let me now talk about a person. mark wright. mark wright is an army veteran who just retired at a lieutenant colonel after 23 years in the united states army. mark wright served two tours in iraq. he was hired as a d.o.d. civilian nine months ago, and he lives with his wife and his two elementary schoolchildren in an apartment in stafford county. mark wright was already furloughed once this year because of the sequester, hurting his pocketbook, hurting his family and his kids. and now he's furloughed a second time at the d.o.d. he was in the market to try to buy a home so he could move out of an apartment and be a homeowner for the first time in stafford county, but he's putting those plans on hold because he doesn't know -- he doesn't know whether he can afford the house payment. there are many mark wrights in virginia. 70,000 d.o.d. civilians have already been furloughed in virginia because of the
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sequester and 37% of all federal employees in virginia are veterans. so when you do a shutdown of government, you're hurting veterans. why do they punish mark wright and thousands like him? so what needs to be done? you heard it already. let me state this very clearly. if another nation attacked the united states to shut our government down, if another nation attacked the united states to tank our financial system, i know exactly what we would do. congress and the american people, out of patriotic love for this country, would rally with every ounce of energy they had to keep government open, to pay our bills and to protect the full faith and credit of the united states. and you know who would be first in line who would do that? mark wright and thousands like him who just want to serve this country would be first in line to help us do that. that's our challenge before us
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today. there's been a carefully planned effort to shut down our government. there are efforts to destabilize our financial system, even if these efforts hurt the chincoteagues of the world and the mark wrights of the world. we need to rally out of patriotic love for this nation, to reopen government, to protect our fiscal system and then use the regular process of legislation to talk about any other issue that the american public wants. it's now my pleasure to introduce my senior senator and my friend of 32 years, mark warner. >> senator tim kaine joined by other senate democrats, live coverage on capitol hill. and we are going to leave this event in a moment. a reminer, you can watch this at we'll be airing it lit later today. at the top of the hour at noon eastern time we'll go to the house of representatives where lawmakers would undertake a bill that would provide death benefits. at least five who died in afghanistan over the weekend denied so far the $100,000 in payments for funeral expenses. the house and senate taking up
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that action today. we'll have live coverage from the floor of the house. want to point your attention from the president and the dems split on strategy. senate democrats and the president have divided over the important strategic decisions in the battle to raise the debt ceiling. we point that out because president will be meeting with house democrats at about 4:30 eastern time. and we expect to hear from congressional democrats later in the afternoon. the president also expected to meet with congressional republicans in the coming days as the continued debate over day eight of the shutdown continues and the debt limit as well, we did receive word that the house will be back in session also on saturday morning at 9:00 eastern time. right now we'll take you to the floor of the house of representatives, live coverage here on c-span television and a reminder, you can watch the news conference with senate emocrats live at [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013]
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the speaker: the house will be in order. the prayer will be offered today by our guest chaplain, reverend rob maclevain,


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